PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTSParadoxically (perhaps), these productivity gains should lead to employment growth in the future, provided that growth is not constrained by a decline in purchasing power.
Third Quarter 2009, Preliminary
Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 9.5 percent annual rate during the third quarter of 2009, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This was the largest gain in productivity since the third quarter of 2003, when it rose 9.7 percent. Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing an index of real output by an index of hours of all persons, including employees, proprietors, and unpaid family workers. Output increased 4.0 percent and hours worked decreased 5.0 percent in the third quarter of 2009 (All quarterly percent changes in this release are seasonally adjusted annual rates).